In recent years, people have made lists of the most beautiful, spectacular places in the world. Narrowing down the list to just seven or 10 is hard. There are so many to choose from. Which places would you choose? They’re all worth visiting. Read the fun facts about the top 10 natural wonders of the world…
The Top 10 Natural Wonders of the World Facts
Here’s a list we made of the top 10 natural wonders of the world and fun facts about them.
- Preikestolen (Pulpit Rock) in Norway
- The Ngorongoro Crater in Tanzania
- The Seljalandsfoss Waterfall in Iceland
- The Puerto Princesa Subterranean Cave River in the Philippines
- The Fernando de Noronha Archipelago, off the Brazilian coast
- The Cave of Crystals in Mexico
- The Bay of Fundy in Canada
- Uluru (Ayers Rock) in Australia
- The Jeju Lava Tubes in South Korea
- The Shilin Stone Forest in China
Formed in the ice age about 10,000 years ago, this 604 meter high cliff is a famous Norwegian tourist attraction called Preikestolen. A glacier’s edge reached the mountain and its waters seeped in, froze and broke off huge slabs of rock leaving this 25 by 25 meter flat surface. This is the most visited natural site in Norway. The 3-4 hour round trip hike required to reach Pulpit Rock is undertaken by 150,000 to 200,000 people annually. Despite the climb, or perhaps because of it, the number of visitors continues to increase each year, drawn by the phenomenal scenery over Kjerag Peak.
Part of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, the Ngorongoro crater is home to over 25,000 large animals including the black rhinoceros, lion, elephant, zebra, wildebeest and hippopotamus. A natural enclosure that is 2,000 feet deep and covers 100 square miles, this crater includes areas of mountains, forests, grasslands, swamps, a salt lake and even a picnic area for humans. This caldera is the world’s largest inactive, intact and unfilled volcanic crater. Formed by the explosion and then collapse of a volcano two to three million years ago, this caldera is named as one of the Seven Natural Wonders of Africa.
Located between Selfoss and Skogafoss is one of the most picturesque waterfalls in Iceland. Featuring a 200 foot drop, the Seljalandsfoss waterfall in the river Seljalandsa can even be appreciated from behind. Foot trails run behind the cascading waters allowing us mere humans an insider’s look at one of nature’s most mesmerizing views.
A short hike from the town of Sabang in the Philippines will find you at the entrance to the Puerto Princesa Subterranean (Underground) River, one of the official New 7 Wonders of the World. Have you ever heard of a river having a second floor? Well, this one does. Environmentalists discovered underground waterfalls within the cave giving it different levels. Another unique feature was a cave dome found creating a 980 foot high ceiling for a part of the underground river. Also discovered were big bats, a deep water hole in the river, rock formations, other river channels and deeper caves. The deeper caves are almost impossible to explore without suffering from oxygen deprivation.
A string of 21 islands and islets, the Fernando de Noronha archipelago sits in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Brazil. These islands are really the tips of submerged mountains and were discovered by a Portuguese expedition in 1503. In the very late 18th century a prison was built on the main island, providing most of the islands’ human population. Since 1988 most of the islands have been designated as a national park to help protect the ecosystem. The albatrosses, sea turtles, dolphins and other marine life both above and below the water are now the main reasons people visit.
In 1910 workers in the Naica mine in Mexico discovered the Cave of Crystals. In 2000 at the same mine, but about 120 meters below the first crystal cave, workers made an even more amazing discovery. The Giant Crystal Cave is a horseshoe shaped limestone cavity covered in crystalline blocks. There are giant beams of crystal formed throughout the cave including the largest one ever found measuring 13 feet in diameter and weighing 55 tons. The crystals are selenite, or gypsum, and are deteriorating because of their exposure to the air. The mine had drained these caves to work in them, but now they are considering flooding them again to preserve the crystals.
Sitting on the eastern edge of Canada, the Bay of Fundy just kisses the edge of the state of Maine in the United States. This bay experiences the highest tidal range in the world on a daily basis. Tidal range is measured from the highest water level to the lowest during one tidal period (from one high tide to the next). Here that range has been recorded as high as 70.9 feet during a tropical cyclone in 1869. However, the average spring range is 47.5 feet.
Uluru, also widely known by Aussies as Ayers Rock, is a massive sandstone rock inselberg, or island mountain, in central Australia. This well-known Australian landmark rises 1,142 feet in the air and its 5.8 mile circumference is covered with natural springs, rock caves and ancient drawings. Though climbing Uluru is a popular attraction for visitors, the Anangu aboriginal tribe would rather that they didn’t. This formation is sacred ground to the aborigines and they consider climbing it disrespectful. Imagine strangers coming and scaling a church in your neighborhood. Can you imagine anyone being so rude?
The volcanic island of Jejudo is the smallest province of South Korea and home to an extensive system of lava tubes. These now empty caves were once the natural conduits through which magma flowed. For that reason they are also called lateral volcanoes. The The Jeju Lava Tubes are some of the largest in the world making them a popular destination for both tourists and scientists.
Limestone formations jutting straight up from the ground are what make up a shilin or stone forest. The legend behind the well-known, tree impersonating rocks that populate the Yunnan province in China is a sad one. It is said that a young girl was so upset about not being able to be with the boy she loved that she turned into stone. That story is much more romantic than the simple truth that over time, lots of time, say, oh, 270 million years, much of the limestone in the mountain dissolved leaving these pillars, or trees, still standing, called the Shilin Stone Forest.
Top 10 Natural Wonders of the World Videos
Enjoy watching these fantastic videos of top 10 natural wonders of the world to learn more about them.
Here is the Pulpit Rock natural wonder video:
Watch the natural wonder video of the Ngorongoro Crater in Tanzania:
Here’s a video all about the natural wonder of the Seljalandsfoss Waterfall in Iceland:
Watch the Puerto Princesa Subterranean River natural wonder video:
Watch the natural wonder video of the Fernando de Noronha in Brazil:
Watch the Cave of Crystals natural wonder video:
Watch the natural wonder video of the Bay of Fundy in Canada:
Here you find the Uluru natural wonder video:
Watch the natural wonder video of the Jeju Lava Tubes in South Korea:
Wach the natural wonder video of the Stone Forest in China:
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